Surnames I - J

Private 241703 George Alfred Ireland

 

1st Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 22nd March 1918, Aged 19.

Commemorated Arras Memorial bay 5. 

(His brother Joseph Thomas Ireland also fell see below) 

Pte. G. A. Ireland, was the son of Mr. Joseph Ireland, of 67 Oxford Street, Loughborough. He was a member of the Emmanuel C. L. B., and joined the Territorials when only 16 years of age, but on reaching France was sent home again. He re-joined later and on attaining his 19th birthday went to France a second time.

Private 16409 Joseph Thomas Ireland

 

2nd Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 25th September 1915, Aged 20.

Commemorated Loos Memorial panel 42 - 44. 

(His brother George Alfred Ireland also fell see above) 

John Thomas Ireland was born in Shepshed in 1895, the son of Joseph Ireland, a stone quarry labourer, and Emily Ann Ireland (née Sharpe) who were married in Loughborough in 1891. Joseph Thomas was the third child in a family of ten; his siblings were: Edith, Cradock, Ethel, George, Constance, John, Maurice, Emily and Kenneth. The Ireland family lived at Forest Street, Shepshed and when young Joseph was 16 he was working as a stone quarry boy.

On 6th December 1912 Joseph, who was now a labourer for Loughborough Corporation and living at 67 Oxford Street, Loughborough, attested for the Territorial Army on 30th May 1913 and was posted as Private 1443 to the 5th Leicesters. He continued with the 5th Leicesters until 10th October 1914 when he was discharged. He re-enlisted in December 1914, joined the 2nd Leicesters as a Private and was sent to France on 4th May 1915. When Joseph arrived in France the 2nd Leicesters were preparing for a military operation in the Richebourg-l'Avoué area of the Pas de Calais. On 9th May they formed part of the second wave in the first attacks of the Battle of Aubers Ridge, without success. They saw action again on the night of 15th May, where the leading battalions met heavy resistance and Brigadier General Blackader was forced to call off the attack. After Aubers Ridge the corps was then rested in a quiet sector until September, when it was deployed for the Battle of Loos. Joseph was killed in action on 25th September, the first day of the Battle of Loos.

Joseph's brother George, who was with the 1st Leicesters, was killed in 1918.

Lance Corporal M2/194187 R. R. Irlam

 

2nd Mechanical Transport Coy. Royal Army service Corps.

Died of Wounds 30th November 1918, Aged 18.

Buried Terlincthun British Cemetery XII. A. 2.

 

Lance Corporal Irlam was the son of Thomas & Louise Irlam of Loughborough.

Private 2079 William Harriman Jackson

 

2nd Bn, Highland Light Infantry.

Killed in Action 28th April 1917, Aged 22.

Commemorated Arras Memorial bay 8. 

 

 
William Harriman Jackson, known as ‘Willie’ to his family, was born in 1894 in Loughborough, the son of John Jackson and his wife Fanny (née Randon) who were married at All Saints’ Church, Loughborough, on 25th November 1893. Willie was baptised at All Saints’ Church on 23rd July 1894. Willie’s father was a needlemaker and in 1894 the family lived at 117 Paget Street. By 1901 they had moved to 41 Union Street and by 1911 to 68 Station Street. Willie had one sister Ivy; his only brother Samuel had died as an infant in 1898. In 1911 Willie was employed as a moulder in an iron foundry but later moved to Messrs. Messengers and Co., Ltd.

Willie enlisted in January 1915 and joined the Highland Light Infantry as Private 2079. He was sent to France to join the 2nd Battalion (known as the Boys’ Brigade Battalion) on 26th May 1915. The 2nd Battalion was in the area of Vermelles, alternately in the trenches or training. At the end of June 1915 the battalion moved to the area of Givenchy where they carried out trench tours as well as tours at Beuvry and Cuinchy until the end of September.

The battalion was in action on the first day of the Battle of Loos, 25th September 1915. They captured some German trenches but heavy counter attacks drove the battalion back to its starting point. 329 casualties were sustained during the day.

From October to December the battalion was on trench tours in Vermelles, Cuinchy and Cambrin. January 1916 was mainly taken up with training at Bourecq and Bellerive and February with trench repairs at Festubert and Hingette. In March the battalion was in the front line at Fosse 10 (an old mining area on the outskirts of Sains-en-Gohelle). In April the battalion moved around between Coupigny, Thérouanne, Hersin and trenches in the Angres sector. In May they were cleaning craters at Bully-Grenay, in the trenches at Fosse 10 and providing working parties at Coupigny and Fresnicourt. In June there were trench tours near Souchez and at Berthonval.

At the opening of the Somme Offensive in July 1916 the battalion came under fire while working on trenches at Carency. After a break at Vaux-sur-Somme the battalion was in action at Delville Wood where they were heavily shelled. August and early September were spent on trench improvement before the battalion was back in the front line in the Redan sector until 11th November, with training breaks at Vauxchelles and Acheux. On 13th November, in the Battle of the Ancre the battalion attacked and took the enemy’s front line trenches north of Beaumont-Hamel.

From December 1916 to 9th February 1917 training took place at Noyelles-en-Chaussée, Gézaincourt, Ovilliers, Aveluy and Bouzincourt. Returning to the trenches near Bouzincourt they were heavily shelled. On 21st March the battalion began a six-day march to Cauchy-à-la-Tour where further training took place until 9th April, after which the battalion moved to Bray-sur-Somme to dig a new front line.

An offensive operation in the area of Arleux as part of the 2nd Battle of Arras was being planned for 28th April 1917. On the first day of the Battle of Arleux Willie was killed in action, aged 22.

Willie is commemorated on the Arras Memorial, Bay 8. He is also remembered on the memorial in the former St. Peter’s Church building, Loughborough, and on the Carillon.

Sergeant 14953 Eric Ivo Jacques

 

8th Bn. Leicestershire Regiment.

Died of Wounds 20th August 1916, Aged 24.

Buried Aubigny Communal Cemetery Extension I. E. 8.

 

Eric Ivo Jacques was born in 1891 in Barrow on Soar, the son of Robert William Jacques, a bricklayer, and Rose Jacques (née Kirby) who were married in Barrow on Soar in 1879. Eric was one of ten children. He had three brothers Robert William (Junior), Arthur, and Harold and four sisters Ann, Harriet, Mabel and Sarah. Two other siblings Frank and Mary had died young. In 1901 the family was living at 23 Gordon St, Loughborough, but by 1911 had moved to 53 Morley St. Prior to the War Eric worked as a moulder at Messenger and Co. and was a member of the Old Loughburians Football Club. For a number of years he was a drummer in the St. Peter's Church Lads Brigade, and latterly a teacher in the Woodgate Baptist Sunday School.

Eric came from an old soldiering family. He had a great-grandfather who was in the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) who fought at Waterloo and had three horses shot under him and a grandmother who was born in Windsor Barracks. An uncle once walked from Barrow (where the family came from) to Chatham to enlist.

Eric enlisted on 4th September 1914 at Loughborough and joined the 8th (Service) Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment on 24th September as Private 14953. He was promoted to Lance Corporal on 7th November 1914. From the Depot he was sent firstly to Aldershot for training and then to Shorncliffe in Kent at the end of February 1915. In April 1915 Eric's battalion became part of the newly established 37th Division of Kitchener's 2nd New Army and the Division began to concentrate on Salisbury Plain. On 25th June the units were inspected by King George V at Sidbury Hill. On 22nd July the Division began to cross the English Channel and Eric travelled from Folkestone to France on 29th July 1915. Initially the 37th Division concentrated near Tilques.

The 8th Battalion then moved via Watten, Houlie, St. Omer, Eecke and Dranoutre to Wulverghem and Berles-au-Bois. In the eleven months that followed the battalion was mainly based in the area of Bienvillers and Bailleulmont, a short distance from the front line south-west of Arras. They did tours in the trenches, the 6th Battalion alternating with the 8th Battalion who relieved them. The battalion was mainly Involved in localised operations in Bailleul, Le Bizet, Armentières, Mondicourt, Beauval and Berles-au-Bois. On 9th April 1916 Eric injured his ankle in bayonet fighting at the Brigade Sports Ground, while attacking trenches and scaffolds and was admitted to No. 6 General Hospital in Rouen three days later. He was discharged on 29th April and sent to convalesce at Etaples. He rejoined his battalion in the field on 20th May.

Eric was promoted to Corporal on 10th December 1915, to Lance Sergeant on 6th February 1916 and to Sergeant on 26th June 1916.

At the beginning of July the 8th Leicesters were sent to the Somme. On the 14th July the battalion was in action at the Battle of Bazentin Ridge. After the battle the battalion withdrew to Ribemont and then to Méricourt, and having entrained for Saleux, marched to Soues. From Soues the battalion moved to Longeau, Gouy-en-Ternois, Lattre St. Quentin and then to Arras where they went into the trenches on 29th July. Casualty figures for the battalion in July had been high: 17 officers and 415 other ranks had been killed, wounded or were missing.

The battalion went into Divisional Reserve at Agnez-les-Ouisans on 8th August but went back into the trenches on 18th August where they were on the receiving end of trench mortar bombs and heavy shells. Eric was wounded on the following day by a shell which exploded and damaged his jugular vein before he could take cover. He was taken to No. 30 Casualty Clearing Station and died on the following day, 20th August, aged 24. He was buried at Aubigny Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, Grave I. E. 8.

Eric's brothers Robert William (Junior) and Harold and Eric's sister Mabel emigrated to the USA and settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Eric is remembered on the war memorial in All Saints Church, Loughborough, and on the memorial in the former St. Peter's Church building, Loughborough, as well as on the Carillon.

Sergeant 241215 John Newton Jacques

 

2/5th Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 27th September 1917.

Commemorated Tyne Cot Memorial panel 50 - 51. 

 

Private 760008 Albert Leonard James

 

102nd Bn. Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regt.)

Killed in Action 8th June 1917, Aged 37.

Buried Villers Station Cemetery IX. C. 20.

 

Albert was the son of Mr. E. W. James of 79 Storer road, Loughborough. Albert left Loughborough in 1906 where he was apprenticed to Mr. W. Castle, pianoforte dealer, and settled in British Columbia. He joined a regiment of the Canadian Army in October 1915, and he went out to France in February 1916.

Mr. James niece wrote to Albert, and a few days later received the following reply from the Captain and paymaster: -"Dear Miss James, Your letter addressed to Pte. James has been passed to me for reply. I regret to inform you that your dear uncle was killed in action on June 8thon this front. He took part in a big engagement on this date and was killed instantly by a big shell. We buried his body in the Military Cemetery near here, and have erected a suitable cross to mark his last resting-place. He was a good brave solider, and one that we could ill afford to lose, as his place is very difficult to fill. We shall miss him for all time to come, but trust that his noble example and his willing sacrifice will inspire us all to do our part the better. I desire to express to all his sorrowing friends our heartfelt sympathy, and we commend you all to the great love of our heavenly Father that He may administer such consolation that He alone can bestow."

Corporal William Henry James

 

2nd Bn. Leicestershire Regiment.                                   

Killed in Action Mesopotamia 7th January 1916, Aged 26.       

Commemorated Basra Memorial Iraq panel 12.      

 

William Henry James was born in Loughborough in 1889, the son of Selina James. When he was ten years old his mother married William Albert Winton, an iron moulder, and went to live at 35 Cobden Street, Loughborough. Young William Henry, however, remained with his grandparents Martha and William James at 130 Station Road, Loughborough. He had three half-siblings Leonard, Evelyn and Albert Winton.

He enlisted at Leicester as a reservist with the 3rd Leicesters on 3rd November 1908. At the time he was a grocer's assistant and stated that he was a Wesleyan Methodist. He received training in musketry.

In 1911 William was still living with his grandparents at 17 Mills Yard, Woodgate, was employed as a fireman and was also a member of the Loughborough Branch of the Workers' Union. He married Harriet Francis on 30th July 1913 in Nuneaton, and the young couple settled at 14 Chapel Terrace, Southfield Road, Loughborough. William now had a job as a driller at the Empress Works.

William had received his discharge from the 3rd Leicesters on 5th July 1914 but when war broke out he was recalled. He reenlisted with the 3rd Leicesters on 3rd September 1914 as Private 13297 and was sent to Portsmouth. His wife last saw him in early October. On 12th December 1914 he embarked at Southampton for France, having been posted to join the 2nd Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment who had arrived in France from India. In February 1915 he had a short stay in hospital with a foot problem but was back with his battalion in March fighting at the Battles of Neuve Chapelle (10th-13th March) and Aubers Ridge (9th May), the first day of the Battle of Festubert. On 19th May he was appointed an unpaid Lance Corporal.

The 2nd Leicesters spent the next couple of months alternately in the trenches or in billets while war training, in the area of Calonne and Vieille Chapelle north-east of Bethune. On 30th July William was admitted to No. 4 General Hospital, Versailles, where he remained until 21st August when he was discharged to Le Havre. On 26th September he rejoined his battalion which had just been decimated on the first day of the Battle of Loos.

In late October the 2nd Leicesters received orders to proceed to the Persian Gulf where Britain was fighting Turkish forces allied to the Germans. On 10th November 1915 William embarked at Marseilles and arrived at Basra on 8th December 1915. From there he travelled by boat up the River Tigris to Ali Gharbi, 150 miles south-east of Baghdad. He had been promoted to Corporal on 27th November.

In Mesopotamia General Townshend and his troops were under siege at Kut. On January 4th 1916 General Aylmer's leading troops, under Major General Younghusband, began to advance from Ali Gharbi towards Sheikh Sa'ad, with the intention of relieving General Townshend at Kut.

The Turkish commander Nur-Ur-Din had, however, effectively blocked any progress by placing approximately 22,500 troops and 72 guns on both banks of the Tigris at Sheikh Sa'ad, about 16 miles downstream from Kut. General Aylmer therefore ordered an attack on the enemy and very heavy fighting ensued on 7th January at the Battle of Sheikh Sa'ad, during which William was killed. He was aged 26.

William is remembered on the Basra Memorial, Iraq, Panel 12, and on the Emmanuel Church Memorial, Loughborough, as well as on the Carillon.

His widow was remarried to Albert Limmage in 1919 in Rugby, and went to live at Blue Ram Cottage, Dunchurch, near Rugby, Warwickshire.

Sergeant 31277 Bernard Jarram M.M.

 

7th Bn, South Lancashire Regiment.

Atd 19th Bn. Machine Gun Corps. (Inf)

Killed in Action 18th April 1918, Aged 28.

Commemorated Tyne Cot Memorial panel 92 - 93 & 162a 

 

Bernard was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Jarram Lower Cambridge Street, and his wife lived at 139 Derby road, Loughborough. Prior to enlisting, he was employed as machine minder at Messrs. J. Corah and Son, printers. The first imitation of his death was received from a comrade in the same corps, who wrote saying he had been killed by a shell, and that he was buried in an English cemetery.

Able Seaman 216322 Ernest Jarram

 

H.M.S. Good Hope Royal Navy.

Killed in Action 1st November 1914.

Commemorated Portsmouth Naval Memorial panel 2. 

 

 

 

H.M.S. "Good Hope"

She was sunk along with HMSMonmouth by the German armoured cruisers Scharnhorst and, Gneisenauunder under Admiral Graf Maximilian von Spee with the loss of her entire complement of 900 hands in the Battle of Coronel, on 1 November 1914, off the Chilean coast.
 

Portsmouth Naval Memorial

 

Lance Sergeant 12722 Sydney Jeffs

 

8th Bn, Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 15th July 1916, Aged 25.

Commemorated Thiepval Memorial pier & face 2c & 3a.


Sydney Jeffs was born in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, in 1891 and baptised with his brother Frank on 9th September 1896 at All Hallows Church, Wellingborough. Sydney was the son of Thomas Jeffs, a currier, and his wife Mary Ann (née Shortland) a grocer, who were married in Wellingborough in 1880. Sydney had two brothers Evelyn Ernest (known as Ernest) and Frank and one sister Dora. In 1896 the family lived at 42 West Terrace, in 1901 at 1 Bedale Road, in 1911 at 128 Midland Road, and in 1914 at 13 High Street, all in Wellingborough. By 1914, however, Sydney who had completed a three-year apprenticeship in the grocery trade, had left Wellingborough and was employed as a grocer's assistant in Loughborough.

Sydney enlisted at Loughborough on 3rd September 1914. He joined the 8th (Service) Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment as Private 12722 and was sent to Aldershot. He moved to Shorncliffe Camp near Cheriton in Kent at the end of February 1915. In April 1915 Sydney's battalion became part of the newly established 37th Division of Kitchener's 2nd New Army and the Division began to concentrate on Salisbury Plain. On 25th June the units were inspected by King George V at Sidbury Hill. On 22nd July the Division began to cross the English Channel and Sydney travelled to France on 29th July 1915. Initially the 37th Division concentrated near Tilques and on 28th August Sydney was appointed a Lance Corporal (unpaid), a rank later confirmed with status changed to 'paid' on 4th December 1915.

From Tilques the 8th Battalion moved via Watten, Houlie, St. Omer, Eecke and Dranoutre to Wulverghem and Berles-au-Bois, a short distance from the front line. In the months that followed the 8th Battalion did tours in the trenches, alternating with the 6th Leicesters who relieved them. They were Involved in operations in Bailleul, Le Bizet, Armentières, Mondicourt, Beauval and Berles-au-Bois. In April 1916 the battalion moved to the Doullens area for six weeks for cleaning up, resting and training.

Between January and May 1916 Sydney was promoted twice, to Acting Corporal and then Lance Sergeant.

In mid-May the battalion returned once more to the trenches in the Bienvillers-Bailleulmont sector, but nearer Gommecourt. In June there was a series of nightly excursions into No-Man's Land with patrols attempting to gather information on the enemy's dispositions. On other occasions there were working parties out repairing the British barbed wire entanglements. The situation became increasingly hazardous as the month wore on when the Germans began to use a new and more accurate type of trench mortar.

The 8th Battalion did not participate in the first days of the Somme Offensive but was held in reserve. On 6th July they left billets at Humbercamps and marched to Talmas, continuing on the following day to billets in Soues. On 10th July the battalion marched to Ailly-sur-Somme, entrained for Méricourt and travelled from there by lorry to bivouacs in Méaulte. Between 10th and 13th July the battalion was in the trenches near Fricourt and subjected to fairly continuous enemy fire. On 14th and 15th July the battalion advanced on Bazentin Le Petit Wood. During this operation Sydney, aged 25, was killed in action on 15th July 1916.

A comrade, writing to Sydney's parents, said: 'I am sending these photos back which I found in the battlefield near some dead men of the Leicestershire Regiment. I also found the disc bearing your son's name where men of the Leicester Regiment had been buried. There had been a stiff fight for there were many dead Germans about'.

Sydney is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 2C and 3A.

Sydney's brother Ernest who had emigrated to Australia served in France with the Australian forces as a Surgical Dresser in No. 3 Australian Casualty Clearing Station. He survived the war.

Second Lieutenant William Frederick Jelley M.C.

 

6th Bn. Yorkshire Regiment.                                   

Died of Wounds 2nd November 1917, Aged 22       

Buried St Sever Cemetery, Rouen, B. 4. 14.      

 

Lieut. W. F. Jelley, M. C. only son of ex-police Sergt. Jelley, of 124 Leopold street, Loughborough. He had been in a critical condition since the date he was wounded 14th August and on October 19th his condition necessitated an operation and he progressed fairly satisfactorily, but three days before his death the leg had to be amputated. In September 1914, he joined the 8thLeicesters, and in a very short time was promoted to sergeant. On recovering from wounds received in July 1916, he was granted a commission in February 1917. Lieut. Jelley, who was 22 years of age, and a native of Syston, was educated at the Loughborough Intermediate School and latter at the Grammar school, which he attended for five years. Before his death one of the Royal Princes attended at Lieut. Jelley's bedside and read out to him the order conferring upon the wounded hero the award of the Military Cross. The wording was as follows. "On August 14 you showed great courage and initiative in leading your platoon. Though wounded in the head you continued to lead your platoon until you had gained your objective. Later in the day you were again wounded having your right thigh broken. Though in great pain and unable to move you continued to urge on your platoon, and by your example of fortitude kept up the spirits of your men until after dark when you were carried from the field."

Private 40088 Joseph Jerrison

 

14th Bn. King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry.

Died 19th January 1917, Aged 38.

Buried Benfieldside Cemetery, Blackhill, Consett, County Durham.. 

 

Joseph Jerrison was born in 1878 West Bromwich, Staffordshire. He was the son of William Jerrison and his first wife Sarah Ann (née Parkes) who were married on 10th August 1873 at St. Thomas's Church, Dudley, Worcestershire. William Jerrison was an iron moulder, and after his first wife died, aged 32, in 1884, he was married again in 1891 to a widow Selina Fisher (née Garvey) in 1891.

Joseph had four full-siblings William, Maria, Sarah Ann and Reuben, one half-sibling Betsy (daughter of his father and Selina) and six step-siblings Hannah, Selina, William, Mary Ann, Charlotte and Nellie Fisher (Selina's children from her first marriage). In 1881 the Jerrison family lived at 40 Great Bridge Street, West Bromwich, but after Joseph's father married Selina they moved to 30 Henry Street to accommodate the expanded family. By 1901 most of the children had left home and Joseph's father and step-mother were living at 49 Phoenix Street with just Joseph and Betsy and one grandson Aaron. Joseph, aged 23, was now a labourer in an iron foundry.

On 9th October 1905 Joseph married Hannah Askey at St. John's Church, Newbold, Derbyshire, The couple moved to Chesterfield where they had a daughter Mary in 1907, but losing two other children in infancy. Joseph and Hannah then moved to 12 Shipstone Street, Ilkeston, Derbyshire, as Joseph had secured employment as a pipe moulder at Stanton Iron Works.

In late 1916 Joseph enlisted at Ilkeston and joined the 14th (Home Service) Battalion of the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (K.O.Y.L.I.) as Private 40088. The 14th Battalion was part of the 72nd Division which had the dual role of carrying out training of men for overseas drafts, plus providing forces for home defence. The Division came under command of Southern Army, Home Forces, and was responsible for East Coast defences from the River Deben to Orfordness.

Joseph was not with K.O.Y.L.I. for very long, being discharged from the Army a few months after he joined. As his service record has not survived the reason for his discharge is unknown. Joseph did not, however, return home to his wife who was now living at 1 Court B, Pinfold Gate, Loughborough. but took a job at the Consett Iron Works, County Durham. A few weeks after he began work at Consett he tragically appears to have committed suicide.

The Middlesbrough Daily Gazette of 19th January 1917 carried the following report: 'About 7.30 this morning Joseph Jerrison who lodged with Private D. Cowey at 2 Trafalgar Street, Consett, was found lying in the kitchen of his lodgings with his throat cut and a razor by his side. He was a discharged soldier and had recently started work at the Consett Iron Works. PC Crosby rendered first aid and Dr. Macintyre was summoned but the man was dead'.

Joseph was only 38 when he died. He was buried at Benfieldside Cemetery, Durham Road, Blackhill, Consett, County Durham, Grave 6. C. 399. Although he had been discharged from the Army when he died he was accorded a military gravestone.

Private 6841 Ernest Francis Johnson

 

1st Bn. Coldstream Guards.

Died of Wounds 14th September 1914, Aged 26.

Buried Vendresse British Cemetery, Aisne, III. I. 9. 

 

Ernest Johnson was the younger son of William Johnson, a needlemaker who died in 1896, and Agnes Mary Johnson. Ernest's older brother, Thomas Warrington Johnson, was a bookbinder in Loughborough. Ernest was killed in action at the First Battle of the Aisne when the 1st Coldstreamers were climbing with some difficulty up the narrow paths north of the river Aisne towards Vendresse and Cerny and were raked by enemy fire. In the spring of 1914 Ernest had married Winifred Milward at Belper, and the couple briefly set up home in Kilburn, Derbyshire. Their son, Francis Herbert Warrington Johnson, was born in January 1915, four months after his father's death.

Private 203151 Joseph Edward Johnson

 

1/4th Bn. Leicestershire Regiment.                                   

Killed in Action 21st December 1917, Aged 19.       

Buried Cambrin Military Cemetery M. 29.      

 

Joseph was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson, 3 Southfield road, Loughborough. In a letter the Lieut. of Johnson's platoon wrote that he was killed instantly by shellfire on December 21st, about 2.pm, and was buried in the cemetery just behind the lines. Pte. J. E. Johnson was 19 years of age and had seen two winters' service abroad. He had been previously been wounded and had also been gassed. At the time of enlistment, in March 1915, he was employed at the Nottingham Manufacturing Co.

Sergeant 260012 Herbert Jones

 

2/5th Lincolnshire Regiment.

Formerly 2991 Leicestershire Regiment.

Killed in Action 26th September 1917, Aged 38.

Buried Bridge House Cemetery, Langemark-Poelkapelle B. 10. 

(His step-son Percy Jones also fell see below) 

The Captain of his company writing to Mrs. Jones said that her husband was hit by a shell and was he believed killed instantly, so that he could have suffered no pain. The writer adds:" I need hardly say we shall miss him particularly in this company. The whole company join with me in offering you our sincere sympathy in your sad bereavement." Sergt. Jones, who was 38 years of age, was well known and highly respected in the town where he had held the stewardship of the Loughborough Club for over four years immediately prior to joining up, and for three years before taking up those duties he was County Court bailiff. In his younger days he served his time in the Northampton Regt. and on the outbreak of war he answered the call to the colours promptly, and enlisted in the Leicestershire regiment in Sept. 1914. From the "tigers," after acting as Mess-Sergt. to the 5 Leicesters, he was transferred to the Lincoln's, and went to France. Mrs. Jones lost her only son, Trooper Percy Jones, Leicestershire Yeomanry, on the occasion of the ever memorable stand made by the Yeomanry on 13thMay 1915, and much sympathy is felt with the stewardess of the Loughborough Club by members, where her husband was held in high esteem.

Private 1920 Percy Spencer Jones

 

Leicestershire Yeomanry.                                   

Killed in Action 13th May 1915, Aged 20.       

Commemorated Ypres Menin Gate panel 5.      

(His step-father Herbert Jones also fell see above) 

Percy Spencer Jones was born Percy Spencer Allen in 1894 and was baptised on 9th December 1894 at Holy Trinity, Bordesley, Warwickshire. His father Thomas Allen, a viewer of guns, had married his mother Annie Elizabeth Spencer on 21st July 1891 at Christchurch, Sparkbrook, Warwickshire and Percy was the only child from this marriage. By 1901 the Allen family were living at 88 Bawtry Road, Attercliffe cum Darnall, Yorkshire.

Thomas Allen died sometime between 1901 and 1908, and in 1908 Percy's mother Annie was married at Leicester to Herbert Jones, a county court bailiff eight years younger than herself. Herbert and Annie Jones set up home at 76 Gladstone Street, Loughborough. In 1911 Percy was a porter for a fishmonger and late in 1912 or early 1913 he enlisted, adopting his step-father's surname of Jones on enlistment.

Percy was killed in action at the Battle of Frezenberg. Percy's step-father Herbert Jones, a Sergeant with the 2/5th Lincolnshire Regiment, was also killed in action in 1917.

Private 30106 Randolph Cecil Jones

 

9th Bn. Devonshire Regiment.

Formerly Private 25632 Leicestershire Regiment

Killed in Action 25th March 1917, Aged 31.       

Commemorated Arras Memorial bay 4.      

 

Randolph Cecil Jones was born in 1885 in Nottingham, the son of Samuel Matthew Jones and Frances Porter (or Potter) Jones (née Shaw) who were married in Nottingham in 1881. Randolph had two sisters Mabel and Alice and a brother William. Randolph's father was initially a groom to a physician and surgeon in Nottingham, but by 1891 he had become a cab proprietor in Loughborough and the Jones family was living at 6 Sparrow Hill. In 1901 they were living at 12 Mill Street, Loughborough and in 1911 at the Barley Mow Inn where Randolph's father was now the licensed victualler.

When Randolph was 15 he was learning to be a joiner and in 1911 he was working as a coach maker for the Brush Company. After 1911 he worked at the Black Lion Inn and subsequently moved to the Albion Inn until he enlisted in February 1916.

Randolph joined the Leicestershire Regiment as Private 25632. Information about his military service is scarce as his service record has not survived but at some point in 1916 he was transferred to the 9th (Service) Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment.

The 9th Devonshires had been in France since August 1915 as part of the 30th Brigade, 7th Division of the Army. After the Battle of Loos where the battalion suffered 476 casualties, they moved to Givenchy and then in 1916 to the Somme. On 1st July 1916 the battalion led the attack towards Mansel Copse, where well-placed machine guns, whose crews had survived the preliminary bombardment, cut down hundreds of advancing men. On 13th/14th July the battalion was involved in a night attack on Bazentin. By the end of July the battalion had lost many men on the Somme and was withdrawn for rest and reconstruction. In early September the 9th lost heavily again from shelling during an attack near Ginchy. When Randolph joined the 9th Battalion in 1916 is unknown but it could have been at any point during the summer or autumn.

From mid-November 1916 the battalion took part in the Operations on the Ancre. The initial Allied move was to advance the trenches to within assaulting distance of the Le Transloy- Loupart line before the weather deteriorated. In January 1917 as soon as active operations again became possible, proceedings were commenced to drive the enemy from the remainder of the Beaumont-Hamel Spur. This was followed by a push across the Beaucourt Valley to the western slopes of the spur beyond from opposite Grandcourt to Serre.

The next objective was to carry the line forward along the spur which ran northwards from the main Morval-Thiepval Ridge about Courcelette, and so gain possession of the high ground at its northern extremity. Despite many counter-attacks by the enemy and some fierce fighting the enemy began to evacuate the area and by 25th February the enemy had mostly been successfully driven back to the Le Transloy-Loupart Line.

The enemy's final position at Irles was successfully taken on 10th March. After a heavy artillery bombardment on 12th-13th March the enemy fell back further. It became clear that the enemy had begun to withdraw to the Hindenburg Line, a defensive system which ran south-eastwards from Arras for twelve miles to Queant and passed west of Cambrai towards St. Quentin.

Further allied advances were made and by 18th March Chaulnes and Bapaume had been captured, and advanced bodies of Allied troops had pushed deeply into the enemy's positions at all points from Damery to Monchy-au-Bois. On subsequent days the advance continued but as the Allies came within two to three miles of the Hindenburg Line enemy resistance increased and minor engagements multiplied from day to day along the front. During one of these engagements on 25th March 1917 Randolph was killed in action, aged 31. In a letter to Randolph's parents his platoon officer said: 'Your son died nobly for his country carrying out his duty on one of the advanced posts. We much deplore the loss of a brave comrade. I laid him to rest in a quiet spot, and erected a little cross'.

Randolph is commemorated on the Arras Memorial Bay 4.

Randolph's elder brother William who served with the Leicestershire Regiment in Egypt and East Africa survived the war.